Lahore, Nov 14 : A top cop in Gujranwala town in Pakistan has reportedly directed the local cablewallahs not to air Indian entertainment channel "Star Plus" because programmes running on this channel hurt conservative or religious sentiments.
But, the cable operators have complained against the move saying that their business largely depended on this particular channel, as it was immensely popular in Pakistani households.
According to one operator, Gujranwala Range DIG Zulfiqar Ahmed Cheema called them to a meeting last week and asked them to stop airing all Indian channels as a 'moral duty. "But, after consulting someone on the telephone, he asked us not to show one particular Indian entertainment channel," the Daily Times quoted him as saying.
Punjab Police Inspector General Shaukat Javed said the DIG had only asked cable operators not to air content that hurts conservative or religious sentiments. He denied any particular channel had been banned.
However, cable operators alleged that Cheema had said India was an enemy that had withheld Pakistan's water, and that "India was promoting its culture and obscenity through its TV channels."
A senior government official said that he had talked to the DIG, and said the government or the relevant Pakistan Electronic Media Regulatory Authority (PEMRA) had not issued any such instructions. He said the DIG refused to hear him out and insisted that his point of view be accommodated.
PEMRA Chairman Mushtaq Malik said he had sent a letter to the DIG asking him not to pressure the cable operators to stop airing the channel. "We are looking into the matter and hopefully it will be resolved," the paper quoted him as saying.